In the battle of David and Goliath, we see a little brotherly spat between David and his oldest brother Eliab. The Israelites had been ‘having words’ with Goliath for 40 days on either side of the mountain. It paints quite a funny picture for me – they would approach each other, Goliath would shout something intimidating and the Israelites would shrink back in fear. Scripture says that the Israelites were “dismayed and greatly afraid.” 1 Samuel 17:11
In walks David – he was just so great, wasn’t he? I love this guy. What I adore about David in this scene is that he could not understand what all this standing around was about. For him it was simple.
“For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?”
Like, ‘I don’t get it – what are you standing around for? How dare he -get him!’ That faith. The unquestionable power of the living God. The lack of fear because he knew God was with him.
Eliab becomes irate. “Eliab’s anger was aroused against David” (v28). Why? Because David was a meddling little brother? Not quite.
Look at what Eliab says,
“I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.”
These men were terrified of Goliath. What they could not do in forty days, David was willing to do then and there. So, the pride in Eliab’s heart caused him to judge David’s heart incorrectly. He was seeing his own heart, not David’s. Also, I think Eliab knew David was right! That must have stung. Classic projection – Psychology 101.
Intimidation through words – Goliath intimidated Eliab with his words; while Eliab tried intimidating David with his own words!
What Eliabs do you face today? Do you have something burning in your heart to carry out for the Holy Spirit, only to be told by someone that you’re not good enough, you don’t know anything, it’s your “pride”, or you only serve tea at church, so how could you possibly carry out what you think God has asked you to do? Or is the voice of Eliab your own?
I almost got sucked in badly by this once. I had to consistently take it to the Lord in prayer and the first verse He led me to was,
“For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that day” 2 Timothy 1:12
We will suffer for the things Jesus has pressed on our hearts to do, no doubt; but you do not have to be ashamed by peoples’ doubts of you or become intimidated by it! If the Holy Spirit has put it on your heart to do something, do it! Don’t be put down by the Eliabs of the world, those who judge you out of their own issues. David never walked away at Eliab’s harsh accusation – he stood his ground!
“Is there not a cause?” (v29)
You have a cause and purpose for the Lord and you know who you believed – Jesus, not man. When you commit your good works for the Lord to Him, He will keep it for you.
Don’t be put down by others, friend. That pressing from the Holy Spirit is undeniable. He wants to use you! It is up to Him – not other people and what they say or think.
Stand your ground and fight for the Lord!
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